Every child is born ready to navigate their personal journey. As educators, our role is to observe and support each child as they find their voice and identity in the world. At CityKids we aim to slow down time and encourage children to remain inspired by the multicultural world around them. Our teachers remain inspired to perfect their craft by acknowledging the impact we have during these foundation stages of life.
Elvia Fisher Meir, Owner and Director came to Israel in 2007 as a recent Psychology and Business graduate. Her entrepreneurial brain got to work after recognizing the lack of English speaking resources for families in Tel Aviv. Elvia has spent the last eleven years building CityKids programs and learning about Developmentally Appropriate Practice. In 2018 she created Early Childhood Educators in Israel a professional network and community of practice. She developed and hosted the first national conference in 2019. She is an advocate for quality education and serves as a consultant for government bodies and academic institutions.
Juliet Taylor, Nursery School Education Director began her career as a first grade teacher in the British public system. While in her position she was head of the art department, created an early years phonics program and mentored student teachers, coaching and supporting them towards qualified teacher status in partnership with the JTTP (Jewish Teacher Training Partnership.) She also attained a Post Graduate Certificate in Psychology from UCL, London's Institute of Education. Juliet arrived in Israel in 2013 and began working at CityKids in the Three's classroom. Over the last six years, Juliet has developed her role as Educational Director and has nurtured a vibrant team of educators, providing a warm, loving and supportive environment for every teacher and child to fulfill their potential. She is currently studying for her Masters in early Childhood Education with a concentration in Advocacy and Leadership and is dedicated to raising the standards and profile of early childhood education in Israel for the benefit of fellow educators and the future generation.
Ashley Reich, Administrative Director grew up in New Jersey before making Aliyah in 2014. Her love and passion for children started at young age as she worked as a nanny and at the JCC as a camp counselor and later the Youth and Teen Director. Ashley planned programs and events for children of all ages and their families. She thrives in providing a safe and predictable environment for the children, staff and community of CityKids.
Tali Azoolin, Program Director is very excited to move into the role of Program Director. She moved to Tel Aviv from Fort Lauderdale, Florida after graduating with a degree in Elementary Education from Towson University. She has been teaching at CityKids for three years and is looking forward to incorporating her knowledge from being a Director at a sleep away camp in the United States every summer into her new position.
NURSERY SCHOOL TEACHERS
Maya Treistman was born and raised in Peru, where she attended a Jewish High School and was part of a Zionist youth movement. In 2018 she moved to Israel and finished her BA in psychology at IDC Herzliya and worked in research about infant temperament and emotional regulation. She has been working as a babysitter for newborns and children up to four years old. She is passionate about child development and is excited to include nature and outdoor activities to the classroom.
Irene Zavala was born and raised in Honduras. She lived, worked and studied in Taiwan for 4.5 years before deciding to make aliyah with her family. She studied business and commerce while teaching English at several schools. She taught full time in a Canadian learning center last year, working with kids of all ages. Irene is excited to continue working in the classroom at CityKids with the One's Class.
Jordi Tarrab was born in Honduras and made aliyah in 2019. She studied courses in psychology and special education, and her passion has always been working with children and the many ways we can inspire them to find their voice. She worked as an assistant in a bilingual school, as a One's teacher for two years. She is excited to continue with her class in the Two's Class this year.
Shayna Rips grew up in Toronto, Canada. She made Aliyah in April 2021, a year after completing the MASA Teaching Fellowship. Shayna holds a degree in Child and Youth Care, a minor in psychology and a certificate in behaviour analysis. In Toronto, she worked for over 3 years in an education centre for children with disabilities. Shayna has experience with children of all ages in multiple environments. She is so excited to join the CityKids community this year!
Jennifer Franklin grew up in Orange County, California and attended Jewish day school and studied abroad at Tel Aviv University before making Aliyah in 2021. She earned her BA in Environmental Analysis and Leadership at Claremont McKenna College, but caring for children is most rewarding for her. She is excited to integrate her knowledge of sustainable living and outdoor experience in the early years classroom. Jennifer has spent many years as a babysitter for various ages and a tutor in after-school elementary programs. Jennifer possesses youthful energy and special attention to guide children through their growth.
Julieta Woloschin was born and raised in Argentina. She graduated as a primary school teacher and worked for four years in a school. She also has extensive experience in non-formal, Jewish education with groups of children between two and five years old. She is passionate about teaching children and she looks forward to being part of the CityKids Three’s team.
Lital Avnor was born in Israel and at a young age moved to Boston, Massachusetts with her family. From a young age, Lital has been working with young children as a camp counselor, teacher, and aide. After studying and receiving a Bachelor’s of Science in Early Childhood Education at Indiana University, Lital returned to Israel to join the IDF as a basic training commander. Lital is excited to continue with her class this year in the Three's.
Sara Atkins is from Boston, Massachusetts. Her teaching career began at the age of 14 while in high school as an assistant teacher in an early childhood center. She received an Associates Degree in Liberal Studies and completed a Bachelor's Degree in English and Diversity Studies at Framingham State University. She received a State of Massachusetts teaching certification while working at the Suzuki Music School of Newton in an infant and toddler program. Before making aliyah with her husband she was teaching at the JCC Greater Boston for two years in the toddler classroom. She is very excited to join the staff and community at CityKids!
Pascale Neumark made aliyah in 2005 with her Israeli husband and three children. After living in Holland, Spain, Switzerland and Belgium she received her BA in Languages and a Law. She practiced as a lawyer until she decided to be a stay-at-home mom. Once her children were old enough she began volunteering in a preschool for refugees for a year which led her to become a preschool and French teacher at an international school for more than two years. She is looking forward to continuing learning, discovering, growing and having fun with all the amazing children of the Four's group!
Becky Rottermann is a trained Psychologist and has worked in education for several years. She was born in Colombia and was very active as a madricha in Jewish education and youth movements. She strongly believes that every human being finds their identity through strengthening bonds with the natural world and the community and that nurturing compassion and mindfulness in children will change the world. In her four years at CityKids she has taught in camp, tzaharon, the Two’s, Three's. She looks forward to spending her fifth year with the Four’s!
Nicole Nembach was born and raised in New York. She received her bachelor's degree in education and psychology. After she graduated, she worked for a year at a preschool in Queens, NY before participating in MASA Israel Teaching Fellowship, teaching English at an elementary school in Petah Tikvah. When the program ended, Nicole returned to NY and worked at a preschool in Manhattan until making aliyah and joining CityKids in July 2017! She is looking forward to her fifth year in our PreK/K classroom!
Dana Benavi was raised in Sherman Oaks, California. She received her bachelor’s degree in Communications and Education from the University of California, Davis. During her education she interned in a 2nd grade classroom for three years and this is where her passion for teaching grew. After graduation, she came to Israel on the MASA Israel Teaching Fellowship program where she worked in an elementary school in Petah Tikvah. Falling in love with Israel, Dana decided to make Aliya and is very excited to continue in PreK/K.
Shikha Kashyap grew up in Mumbai, India and earned her social work degree from the Mumbai University. She worked passionately for two years in the field of anti-human trafficking helping the children of commercially exploited sex workers, to live a life of dignity and respect. She moved to Israel with her partner in 2016 and pursued her Masters in early childhood development at Haifa University. Her interest in working with children at the center of a community pushed her to study International Community Development at Hebrew University after which she spent 7 months in Nepal working with a youth led NGO- Restless Development to design and implement a framework tackling gender-based violence in the rural schools of Nepal. After returning to Israel she worked with an international school for a year as a kindergarten teacher. Watching kids learn, grow and explore their environment, is what drives her. She looks forward to continuing for her second year at CityKids!
Iris Pinto grew up in Istanbul, Turkey. She completed her psychology and cognitive science degrees at Northwestern University in Chicago. Following her graduation, she worked at a nonprofit organization building summer programs for underserved teen girls. She continued her career at a pediatric therapy clinic for special needs children. Iris returned to Istanbul to work with young kids and families as a play-based English teacher. She loves creating a safe and supportive space for children's growth and exploration.
Talia Sandberg grew up in Buffalo, New York. Though she studied Geography in college, she quickly discovered her true passion is for children and caring for them. She began to nanny full time for a family while living in Chicago in 2011. Upon making Aliyah in 2014 she nannied for an amazing family, strengthening her passion and experience with children until she began working at CityKids in 2017.
Sara Rudolph is so excited to be working at CityKids for her second year! She is from Long Island, New York and made Aliyah after doing the MASA Israel Teaching Fellowship program in Jerusalem where she fell in love with teaching English. She has a Bachelor's degree in Early Childhood Education and is currently studying for her Masters at Tel Aviv University in TESOL.
Alexa Vecchio grew up in Marlton, New Jersey and earned her dual certification in Early Childhood and Elementary Education at Towson University. Following graduation, Alexa came to Israel on MASA's Destination Israel program where she worked as a preschool teacher. She fell in love with all things Israel, and spent a few years working as the Birthright Coordinator at the UPENN before making Aliyah in 2021. She looks forward to incorporating her passion for art and creativity to the CityKids environment. Alexa cannot wait to get to know all of the children and watch them grow!
Michael Romick grew up in Dallas, Texas. In college, he studied Psychology, Mathematics and Rehabilitation. After graduating, Michael decided to go to Israel and be a part of Masa Israel Teaching Fellows. After completing the program he decided to make Aliyah, and is now in the process! Michael loves working with kids and is so happy to be joining the CityKids team!
Racheli Blanshay is an elementary school teacher from Canada. She received her BA in Elementary Education from Yeshiva University and has been teaching First through Fifth Grade since 2019.
Our Nursery School teachers Dana, Sara, Shayna and Lital also teach in our English program!